Friday, November 14, 2008

Random Thoughts

I went a whole month without Cracker Barrel (the left coast doesn't have them!), so in the week I've been home in Gallup, I have made up for lost time. My days go so much better after I've had my two eggs, sausage, hash browns, wheat toast, and half-gallon of iced tea.

I've been in Cracker Barrel so much in the past week (8 visits) that I wouldn't be surprised if the manager handed me a "Rising Star" smock and puts me to work.

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It took me 35 years to discover Johnny Cash. Now his music is a staple in my CD player.

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I read another story in the USA Today this morning about the safe-haven law in Nebraska. Thirty-four teenagers and older youth have been abandoned by their parents in the months since this law came into effect. Some of the children have been reunited with their families, but many have been placed in foster care.

I'm not certain where I come down on the controversy this law has produced--whether the law should be left as is, or amended to allow only the abandonment of infants. I just know the situation has highlighted the desperation so many families find themselves in. Whether it be the heartlessness or irresponsibility of parents, the challenging economic fortunes of some, or the unruliness of some kids, it is obvious that families are in crisis.

I cannot help but think that too many families lack the great resource of community. From the article I read this morning, it seems that many of the children who have been abandoned by parents come from single-parent families or families where a parent is incarcerated, addicted to drugs, mentally unstable, and estranged from extended family members. Children need a support system that ranges far beyond the immediacy of father and mother and sibling. An aspect of ancient culture that is sorely missed today is life lived within the context of family, clan/tribe, community, nation . . . and, I must add, church (or, community of faith). I was blessed to have parents who kept me connected not merely within our house, but also our neighborhood, and church.

Perhaps the situation in Nebraska should waken all of us to the responsibilities each of us have to each other.

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I have rooted for the Oklahoma Sooners since I was a kid, but tomorrow I will be cheering on the Texas Tech Red Raiders to defeat O.U. and move one step closer to a #1 ranking and a shot at the national Championship. Call it a case of hometown loyalty.

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Any body up for a round of golf? It's been 13 months since I last walked a course.

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Six days and counting to Rosa's! It's been over 5 weeks since my last bite of beef fajitas! It's a shock that I'm still breathing.

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I absolutely love playing Santa Clause. I'll be travelling for the next 5 weeks, so Santa went shopping last night. Finding those special gifts (insofar as they can be found at Wally World) for my special little girls is a great joy. In route to that mecca of American commercialism, I even popped in the latest Christmas offering from Mannheim Steamroller . . . Christmasville. The only thing better, is watching my beautiful girls rip open their packages and seeing their smiles and hearing their laughter.

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Life is full up of ups and downs, but without a doubt, God is soooo good!